Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Rest in Peace, Ravi Shankar 7 April 1920 – 11 December 2012

One of the greatest and most influential musicians in the world passed away yesterday, Ravi Shankar.

His long time friendship and collaboration with Beatle George Harrison is one of the enduring legacies of the world of music. George called Ravi the "Godfather of World Music,” having brought the musical and spiritual treasures of the East to a whole generation of Westerners. He was a virtuoso on his instrument, the sitar. It is through the Beatles and George Harrison that most of us heard of Ravi Shankar, but once we became acquainted with him, we loved his music. He is not only a pioneer of world music but of multiculturalism in the best possible sense.

Rest in peace, Ravi, you will be missed, but your spirit and music remain!


Two good friends of mine expressed some very beautiful thoughts about Ravi and George this morning, and since I cannot best them, I want to share them with you here.

"R.I.P. Pandit Ravi Shankar - you were one of the century's finest Indian classical musicians, and you did more than any other single individual to bring the beauty and genius of Indian classical music, largely due to your close association with the Beatles, to the ears of the West - I was fortunate enough to meet you and hear you play on many occasions, and you were the single biggest inspiration in life to my mother, who was an accomplished sitar player in her youth - your body of musical work will remain with us and inspire us for a long time to come."

"Ravi Shankar loved George like a son and vice versa. I thank him for his contribution to George's music and therefore, the Beatles' music. It wouldn't be the same without the enrichment he provided by teaching George the sitar. Also, he was just a good man. RIP Ravi Shankar."

Below is a link to a documentary on Ravi Shankar:

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